Registered Nurse First Assist

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Graduate programs

Certificate in Registered Nurse First Assist

Cindi Aurentz, Program Director
OCHS, Room 305E
Phone: 417-836-3069



Program Description

The RNFA Certificate is a program for baccalaureate prepared registered nurses and advanced practice nurses to advance their education and skill set. Graduates are eligible to write the national certification examinations for Certified Registered Nurse First Assistant and earn the credential of CRNFA. Graduates are expected to contribute to the delivery of quality health care through their implementation of evidence based practice.

The program meets the criteria established by the Association of periOperating Room Nurses (AORN) for RNFA programs and is listed as an approved program by the Competency and Credentialing Institute (CCI), the certifying body for RNFAs

The RNFA certificate program consists of 9 credit hours including two on campus sessions and three distance courses including clinical practicum time. Students are expected to participate with a surgeon of their choice for the clinical learning section.

Admission Requirements

  1. Minimum: Bachelor’s degree in a health related field
  2. Unencumbered Nursing licensure in State of practice
  3. Personal liability insurance
  4. ACLS and BLS
  5. 2 letters of recommendation
  6. 2 years’ Operating Room (OR) or advanced practice nursing experience

Additional requirement prior to the completion of the program is obtaining the CNOR credential

Scope of Practice of the RNFA:

The RNFA functions as part of the perioperative nursing practice. Perioperative nursing is a specialized practice.

The RNFA further refinements include: (under the direction of a surgeon)

  • Handling tissue
  • Providing exposure
  • Using instruments
  • Suturing
  • Providing hemostasis

Program Requirements

Required courses include 9 credits total: 2 seated and 7 distance

Course Code Course Title Credit Hours
ANE 620 RNFA Introductory Principles 1 hr
ANE 621 RNFA Pre-op, Inter op and Post op Patient Management I 2 hrs
ANE 622 RNFA Clinical Practicum 3 hrs
ANE 623 RNFA Pre-op, Inter op and Post op Patient Management II 2 hrs
ANE 624 RNFA Cumulative Review and Assessment 1 hr

AORN standards for RN first assistant education programs. In: Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices. Denver, CO: AORN, Inc; 2012:749-751.